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VOTE411 Voter Guide

Rochester Mayor

The Mayor’s Office represents the head of the executive / administrative branch of City Government. The Mayor is responsible for the administration of all City affairs, including approving local laws and ordinances; enforcing laws; and appointing department heads and members of certain boards and commissions. All City operations are overseen by the Office through the direct supervision of the Mayor and appointed senior staff. The administration performs the City's executive and central support functions. These include strategic planning, developing and implementing policy, preparing and administering the annual budget and capital improvement plan, and coordinating the submission of legislation to City Council. The offices of the administration are also responsible for several centralized functions of the City government: Personnel and civil service; communications and public information; examining and evaluating City programs and processes through the Office of Public Integrity; and the City's legal business.
CHOOSE TWO CANDIDATES FROM BELOW TO COMPARE
  • Tony Micciche (Rep, Con, Rfm) Monroe County Legislator

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    James M. Sheppard (WF, Ind) Monroe County Legislator, Candidate for Mayor

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    Lori F. Thomas (TPP) Small business owner

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    Lovely A. Warren (Dem, WE) Mayor of Rochester

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    Alexander J. White (Grn) Managing partner at Boldo's Amory

Change Candidates

Biographical Information

What do you see as the main challenge the City faces and what solution do you propose?

What would you do to create workplace opportunities in Rochester?

Beyond measures already in place, what can be done in Rochester to meet the challenges of climate change?

Campaign Phone (585) 568-7576
Profession Property investor< 25 years at General Motors
Public Safety is a priority. We are NOT at a 30 year low in crime. NO ONE BELIEVES IT! Downtown dies at 6:00P.M. No one wants to live, work, risk their capital to start a business or send their children to school in Rochester if they are not safe! In 2009, I proposed putting Police Precincts and schools back in the neighborhoods to create a "HUB" of services, provide better community policing and more parental involvement. This will increase visibility, decrease response time, deter drug activity, tamp down violence, and build community relationships . This will start to rebuild the neighborhoods. I proposed this 8 years ago! How many mayors have we had since 2009?No mayor did anything except take credit for it. Next,30,000 jobs created? Then why did poverty go up EVERY YEAR? Ask many people why they are leaving Rochester? They say "The school district is terrible!!" As your mayor, I will NOT pay M.O.E.(119 million of your taxes) For failure! for all the proposals, TONYFORMAYOR>ORG.
Once the city is safe, hubs created, trust is earned back, I will put on notice the R.C.S.D. they have 1 year to restructure, ensure proficient teachers and support them, stop social promotion, and raise the graduation rate to 65%! After decades of failure to educate our children, how do I entice businesses to come to Rochester if we have a work force lacking in basic job skills? Now, we can create a conducive business environment starting with Regulatory Reform. In this city, you need a permit to get a permit! I will streamline all permit and zoning processes to unshackle business to grow and hire my people! I will create the Rochester Enterprise Zones! = If a business takes a boarded up building, back in service, bring the building up to code(which increases your property values, increases the tax base, and lowers YOUR taxes) and hires people, permit fees will be refunded and no property tax for 2 years to provide the capital to grow our city! For 49 policies, =TONYFORMAYOR.ORG.
We can install more LED lighting , enforce recycling! So many people are not recycling. this will extend the life of our landfills and if landfills are mostly organic, we can recover more methane gases, provide more jobs and clean up the city. I proposed a prescription drop off boxes using old mailboxes that are locked and secured to keep drugs out of the water ways, protecting the publics safety and the environment. There is a company in Buffalo that has engineered a new type of solar extraction system that looks like standard roofing material! I would negotiate to bring their manufacturing here to produce the material in Rochester, provide jobs, and set up a replacement program for our low income and senior citizens. Also I would expand a program similar to Action for a Better Community's insulation program as Rochester's housing stock is very aged and blow in insulation and install windows and doors to make the homes energy efficient. Furnaces can be included . TONYFORMAYOR .ORG
Campaign Phone (585) 210-0255
Profession Leadership Development, Former Rochester Police Chief
Rochester continues to struggle with extremely high poverty, which is a major factor in every other challenge we face: crime, unemployment, low graduation rates and vacant housing. Rather than the scatter-shot approach that has been taken under the Warren administration, I will set measurable goals and strategically focus on the following areas: job readiness and training through my Rochester Goes 2 Work program; real economic development by rebuilding the Community Coalition and partnering with our major employers; supporting our families through neighborhood Youth and Family Support Centers; completing the RPD reorganization and returning to Policing in the Spirit of Service; and reducing the number of vacant and abandoned properties by fully implementing the recommendations of County Clerk Bello’s Vacant Property Task Force. And all along the way, I will lead with transparency and integrity. Details of my platform can be found at: www.sheppardforrochester.com
Despite outrageous job creation claims by Mayor Warren, there are 800 fewer jobs than when she took office, and the unemployment rate in our minority community is an alarming 18%. On Day 1, I will appoint a new Economic Development Commissioner who is a seasoned professional, with significant experience in business development and a proven track record in creating jobs. City government cannot create all of the jobs we need to support our citizens, but we can strongly support the businesses that will. My Administration will focus on establishing Designated Development Areas to make it easier to bring jobs to our neighborhoods; forging closer partnerships with our area colleges and attracting associated high tech companies; requiring Project Labor Agreements to hire local workers on construction projects; and embracing the Chamber of Commerce’s “One Job” Program to help our current businesses find the right workers right here in Rochester.
The values of justice, responsibility, collaboration, and empowerment must guide our government and community decisions on climate issues in the years ahead. City Hall must serve as a visionary yet capable environmental action hub to make Rochester a global climate leader. Rochester will set an ambitious series of targets in energy production, waste reduction, and green investment to not only meet, but then exceed, our local obligations under the Paris Accords, incorporating goals from Governor Cuomo’s Reforming Energy Vision plan. We must empower everyday Rochesterians in every neighborhood to organize and get active while bringing the various stakeholders together into a collaborative, data-driven, ambitious community network. Please see my full platform here for more information: https://www.sheppardforrochester.com/climatevision/
Address 534 W Main St
Campaign Phone (585) 351-8462
Profession Retired teacher
The main challenges of Rochester are poverty and educational failure. I propose creating a self-sustaining city by increasing owner-occupied housing and supporting a community co-op model that allows families to work together to facilitate their economic success.

By supporting entrepreneurship within community co-ops, parents will have the opportunity to work out of their homes while raising their children, reducing the necessity for early childhood education and supporting a higher level of educability for childen entering school.

Owner-occupied housing increases our tax base, and allows us to regain control over the budget, processess and programs of the school district so that we, as the citizenry, can decide how best to educate our children.

A return to neighborhood schools allows parents to be active participants in their child's education which is the number one predictor of educational success for all children. Building communities around schools streghtens both.
I am more in favor of creating opportunities for entrepreneurship and home based employment. There is currently a wealth of workplace opportunities available given our extensive health care and higher education industries.

Creating small, community centered businesses that appeal to and support the larger industries that already exist in Rochester and the surrounding areas will do more to increase the long term economic growth of the city and region than supporting the work force of big businesses that may leave the area or downsize when profits become unsustainable.

Campaign Phone (585) 445-8232
Profession Attorney
The main challenge faced by the City of Rochester is the inequality of opportunity for adults and children alike. For many years, there have been “two Rochesters,” one of promise and prosperity, and one that was characterized by generational poverty and lack of opportunity. My administration has focused on creating more jobs, safer and more vibrant neighborhoods, and better educational opportunities for all.

Over my first term, we have seeked innovative solutions that have to worked in other cities, we increased development in our neighborhoods, moved the police department to a five-section community model, partnered with the Rochester City School District to implement community schools with wrap around services for both students and parents, and we now provide educational programming at our recreation centers and libraries. Our City is on the right path and I will continue to pursue the strategies that have proven successful over the past four years alongside our community partners.
My administration creates opportunities by investing in businesses as well as people. Programs like ReJob, Operation Transformation Rochester (OTR), and the Young Adults Manufacturing Training and Employment Program help our citizens to gain skills they need to secure a well-paying job. Our Kiva initiative allows underserved entrepreneurs to access capital to start a business, when they are unable to do so through traditional measures. And we have worked diligently to ensure that Rochester will become the photonics capital of the world, setting the stage for a new era of growth for our economy.
In order to ensure a bright and prosperous future for our children, we must show leadership regarding climate change. Our federal government has decided to abdicate its responsibility- that is why I was proud to join the U.S. Compact of Mayors, pledging that Rochester will fulfill the goals of the Paris Accords. Under my administration, we have created a Climate Action Plan, committed to the Sierra Club’s goal of 100% green energy by 2040, and implemented many other green programs and initiatives like: bike and ride sharing, single-stream recycling, installed 24 electric vehicle charging stations, built a solar field on a former landfill, focused on cleaning up brownfield sites. In addition, my administration has opened the door for Rochester to pursue Community Choice Aggregation which allows citizens to bargain collectively to purchase affordable clean energy. Rochester was recognized by the Governor as a Certified Climate Smart Community due to efforts, and a Clean Energy Community.
Campaign Phone (585) 454-8474
Profession Though trained as a teacher I own a store which sells games to children of all ages.
Poverty is the biggest problem facing our city. As mayor I plan to increase funding for vocational training programs like OACES. I will offer a summer job to every student that passes their grade in high school adn if they complete the summer of work I will pay them a weekly stipend if they attend school every day and sty out of trouble. I will create more co-op businesses and make local spending a criteria for all city contracts. We will also pass a real living wage law which will apply to all agencies who receive money from the city. Finally I will use the criteria for winning the Amazon Headquarters to for a plan for development which will help us recruit more tech industries.
From the Amazon RFP they want a city with mass transit, walkable, and with a wow factor. As such I will focus on restoring the subway as a underground walkway for downtown. I will build the skate park and develop parcel 5 as a open space, and push for more parks. I will also advocate for funding to create a fixed route transit system to move our city forward into the reduced car future. Then I would market these features which would compliment our low cost of living and strong college system. Besides this I am a huge proponent of vocational training and will push to expand these opportunities particularly for residents without a high school diploma.
There are two main problems which are driving climate change transportation and energy use, and we need to approach both of these on the local level. As such I have already mentioned the need for a better public transit system and would like to start the process to plan and fund this. As for energy we need to see energy as part of public policy and return it to being a utility like it is in the game Monopoly. I believe only with a public utility will we be able to create the 100% renewable system for both electricity and HVAC which we need. I am committed to investing in wind turbines off Durand Eastman park, solar power on all useful public structures and obtaining and expanding the hydro plants on the Genesee river. Ibelieve we will only be able to do this if the utilities are owned by the public like in Fairport.

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